Most of the following Kwaidan, or Weird Tales, have been taken from old Japanese books,— such as the Yaso-Kidan, Bukkyo-Hyakkwa-Zensho, Kokon-Chomonshu, Tama-Sudare, and Hyaku-Monogatari. Some of the stories may have had a Chinese origin: the very remarkable "Dream of Akinosuke," for example. But the story-teller, in every case, has so recolored and reshaped his borrowing as to naturalize it… One queer tale, "Yuki-Onna," was told me by a farmer of Chofu, Nishitama-gori, in Musashi province, as a legend of his native village. Whether it has ever been written in Japanese I do not know; but the extraordinary belief which it records used certainly to exist in most parts of Japan, and in many curious forms… The incident of "Riki-Baka" was a personal experience; and I wrote it down almost exactly as it happened, changing only a family-name mentioned by the Japanese narrator. (Summary by L. Hearn, from the Introduction to the book and Ava)
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October 7, 2011 Subject:
A patchy collection
It's not really a single book. Japanese ghost stories at the front, musings on ths spiritual meaning of the social organisation of insects at the back. The ghost stories are great, though. IMO: stop there unless you like a bit of theology.
October 12, 2010 Subject:
An entertaining collection of stories that made 4 hours of vacuuming and cleaning mirrors much more bearable. All of the readers were excellent - well paced and perfectly understandable.
There are a few spine-chilling moments and listeners get to learn a lot about Japanese folklore.